The Taiwan High Court yesterday turned down a civil lawsuit filed by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) against political talk show host Shieh Jhy-wey (謝志偉) and a number of guests over comments they made on the show suggesting the KMT had intervened in the judicial process.
The KMT filed the civil suit before the special municipality elections on Nov. 27, 2010, demanding that Shieh, a former minister of the now-disbanded Government Information Office, former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) deputy secretary-general You Ying-lung (游盈隆) and other guests be made to pay NT$2 million (US$66,600) in compensation.
In its ruling, the court said the remarks made by Shieh and the other guests on the show were public issues concerning the public’s interest and could be discussed publicly.
The ruling added that the KMT could file an appeal with the Supreme Court.
Appearing on the green-leaning political talk show Boss Talk (頭家來開講), which aired on Formosa Television, Shieh and his guests discussed a ruling by the Supreme Court convicting former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and his wife, Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍), of bribery and sentencing them to 19 years in prison, sentences that have since been reduced to 17-and-a-half years.
Shieh and the guests hinted that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and the KMT used their influence to interfere with the judiciary to have the convictions made prior to special municipality elections.
They said Ma and the KMT used the ruling to boost the party’s momentum ahead of the Nov. 27 elections.